South African rapper Costa Titch died suddenly this weekend, his family said on Instagram, hours after performing at a music festival. The musician, Constantinos Tsobanoglou, was 28 years old. Social media videos appeared to show Tsobanoglou tripping on stage before being helped up by a bystander. Then Tsobanoglou stands up briefly before appearing to pass out.
“It is with deep pain that we find ourselves having to acknowledge his passing at this time,” Tsobanoglou’s family said in a post on his Instagram. “We are thankful for those emergency responders and all those present in his last hours.”
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The statement did not mention a cause of death. The festival where he was performing, Ultra South Africa, said it was “devastated” by the young rapper’s death.
“Costa was a galvanizing voice amongst South Africa’s amapiano scene – a talented rapper, dancer, singer, songwriter, collaborator and friend to the festival,” the statement read.
One of the biggest artists of amapiano, a genre of music defined by deep house, basslines propelled by log drums, and soulful piano melodies, Tsobanoglou was a rising sensation in South Africa. His rap style blends international rap subgenres like trap music, which has its roots in Atlanta’s burgeoning hip-hop industry, with South Africa’s culture, style, and indigenous languages.
Tsobanoglou was born in the town of Nelspruit in northeastern South Africa, and before switching to rap, he had a successful dance career.
Tsobanoglou’s song “Big Flexa” Since it was a hit on TikTok, and he became a household name throughout Africa. Akon, a Senegalese-American singer who appeared on a remix of the rapper’s song, and his music label had just recently formed a partnership with “Big Flexa.”